The One Where I Went Grocery Shopping Alone

Ever since I’ve evolved into an Independent Person™, the universe hasn’t skipped a day to remind me that I’m still not equipped to face the Independent Life™.

You see, last week, my sister—a fresh graduate, an unemployed individual of society—had finally semi-moved out of our room to join my parents in the adult world and find a decent job. This forces me to do stuff alone, such as eating in public, going to the cinema, and buying groceries.

Eating alone has never been an issue for me, so I’m not really worried about that. I’m still trying to not judge myself by to going to the cinema alone, but I feel like I’ll get the hang of it soon. Grocery shopping, however, is something I haven’t really thought of.

Being the Independent Person™ that I am, I gave it a go and, boy, did it not go well.

Into the new world

As soon as I entered the Supermarket, I felt like I was stepping on an uncharted territory; a new world.

Of course, this wasn’t true at all. I buy food there all the time ever since I became a college freshman. That was different, though, because I bought stuff in small amounts that wouldn’t be counted as grocery shopping.

Anyway, I went straight to a pile of empty blue baskets like a soldier marching to get his/her weapons. The moment I grabbed the first basket that I saw was the moment that I knew this was it: I was ready for battle. That battle being grabbing a cup of noodles and whatnot on the highest shelf at the Instant Noodles aisle.

The struggle is real, okay, especially when you’re a tiny potato fry like me.

The joy of independence

I’m not saying that this must be what Rapunzel felt like when she finally got out of the tower (because, obviously, that was a completely different situation), but this must be what Rapunzel felt like when she finally got out of the tower.

I felt so free while I strolled the aisles and grabbed whatever food I found appetizing. But I was still cautious about the price of each food that I got because I didn’t want my newly-found independence to be the cause of my personal bankruptcy. Like my mom always says, “Everything in moderation.”

So I took everything. (In moderation, of course.)

A box of all-purpose flour for my mug cakes, sachets of instant coffee (cappuccino flavored), my favorite Chips Delight Brownie Cookies—I just kept throwing them in my basket. As the number of items in that basket rose, so did my Independence™.

So far, everything seemed to be going well, but this is Earth we’re talking about. The universe hates the people of the Earth, and it will give us the smallest of troubles just to make sure that we know how it feels.

The counter of regrets

It was exciting to reach the finish line and dump all the food I was going to devour on the counter. As the cashier beeped each item and slid them to the side, I watched the computer screen display that total amount I had to pay.

But damn, I saw those digits on the screen rise faster than my grades ever did. And I only had 300 pesos in my wallet! Oh my God!

The digits rose to 271.75 pesos. There were still a few items left to beep. Oh, no.

I began to feel the back of my neck getting hot and my heartbeat going faster.

It rose to 310. Oh, no. I think I have some coins in my wallet. Yeah, everything’ s still fine.

The atmosphere was suddenly very uncomfortable. Sweat began trickling down my back, staining my thin gray shirt and forming a map.

331. Oh, no.

I checked my wallet to get the money. I counted each bill as I trembled internally.

Total money in my wallet: 210 pesos and 25 centavos. WHATTHEFU—

You have to play the video because that’s exactly how I felt when I finished counting my money.

Everything sucks

It turns out that I miscounted the money that I had before I went out of the house. I thought I had two 100-peso bills, but it turns out that I only had one. Great job, self! Just great.

So, as a consequence for my idiocy, I had to return not one, not two, but three items (all of which were enumerated about 12 paragraphs ago). I had to return my Chips Delight Brownie Cookies! It was preposterous!

Honestly, the universe isn’t even the bad guy here—I was just really stupid. And it may not seem like a big deal when you read it, but GOD I was sweating so much from the embarrassment that I decided I won’t be grocery shopping in that supermarket for at least 6 months.

And that, kids, is why you should always double-check your money before going to the supermarket.

Or, you know, just calculate the total of the items you have to save yourself from embarrassing situations like this.

Please learn from my stupid mistake.

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